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Goan style Dal with Coconut and Black Kokum

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Goan, Indian


For the dal:

  • 2 cups yellow pigeon peas/toor dal – soaked for at least 2 hours
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 black kokum pieces – washed well if you are using tamarind, add 1 tbsp tamarind paste
  • salt – to taste

For the coconut paste:

  • 1 cup fresh grated coconut
  • 1 small onion or 2-3 shallots
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds/jeera
  • 4-5 garlic cloves

For the tempering:

  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds/jeera
  • 2-3 sprig of curry leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed lightly
  • 1 or 2 green chilies optional / dry red chilies can also be used instead of green chilies
  • a pinch or two of asafoetida
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil or ghee or any good vegetable oil
  • For the garnish:
  • Fresh coriander leaves chopped


  • Pressure cook the toor dal with water, salt and turmeric for 3 or 4 whistles; open and mash well.
  • Blend to make a paste using the ingredients 5-8; you may use a little water to get a paste like consistency
  • To the cooked dal, add the coconut paste and the kokum pieces.
  • Add water to adjust consistency as required and season with salt. Bring to boil and then simmer for 5 minutes.
  • To prepare the tempering, heat oil in a pan, crackle the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves, chillies and garlic. Saute till the garlic is lightly browned, switch off heat and add asafoetida.
  • Pour this over the hot dal and mix well.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with rice.


Remove the kokum pieces after 1-2 hours as the flavour continues to seep in if the kokum if left inside which may end up making the dish sour and tart.